Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Life in Mongolia

My dad is in the blue and my mom is all the way on the right.

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The River we get to swim/bathe in.

Sonin you bain? Or whats up in Mongolia. Life here is going pretty good, I can’t believe its already been almost three weeks. We have class everyday for about four hours; language for the first four and culture or job training for the last four. This language is not an easy one to pick up, and even after 20 hour weeks, it is difficult to carry on even a simple conversation. In fact, being confused is a constant mood these days. While sharing a bottle of wine last night (really good red wine is here!!), I was completely lost for two hours in a room full of Mongolians. Most of the time I can try to carry on some dictionary pointing conversations, but not for longer than a few minutes. It becomes frustrating, but it will start coming around sometime, I hope.
On a more positive note, I’ve milked a cow or two. I’m not as skilled as my fellow host family members, but I say by the end of summer I’ll be milking cows as good as any Mongolian. I also road a horse, albeit it was being pulled by a young child and it was only around my hassha, I still road it. Further, some other volunteers, some little Mongolians and I hiked a beautiful hill on Saturday morning. Later that afternoon, we went swimming in river. I’ve also visited a Buddha shrine and natural spring that our town has with my host parents.
I’ve gotten to meet a lot of the extended family, apparently there are about 51 in the entire family-- and I thought my family was big. Some of my cousins are very good looking, very muscular these Mongolian men. And I also have the cutest little cousins in the entire world!
Will post the pictures here up to date-- expect many more to come.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


Soooo, we found out about our host families today.... I have parents and two girls, one at university and one still in highschool. They also have 1 dog and some cows. Both the daughters speak English, which can be an advantage as well as a disadvantage. Hopefully, I won't rely on them to communicate.
I also found out that I must have heels-- and that women here are very posh and dressy (which I knew-- but didn't want to accept). So now, I am search of heels.
No other new news---- but we will be leaving to go to our host families tomorrow!!! Can't wait to get to my new house! And yes, I will be in a house-- no GER, atleast for training.


Tuesday, June 7, 2011

First Days in Mongolia

SAIN BAINUU? ( How are you)

Alot of things have gone down since the arrival in Mongolia and time is going by fast! We arrived in UB on Sunday and went to the Embassy got our paperwork filled out. Then, we went to the tourist gur camp and got lots of shots--- and there are many more to come. The tourist gur camp was very fancy--  it was a cement building with a bathroom and hot water. I took two small hikes up some hills there--- 1 overlooked UB--it was pretty and I will post pics soon. Monday morning we came to our training site  by bus-- about  four hour ride. Bumpy ride-- but beautiful. We saw many horsemen along the way---- not that we don't have that stateside (or had 100 years ago), but it was unreal to see these herdsmen decked out in their garb and gathering the cattle. Stopped at a bathroom/restaurant and got ice cream-- so ice cream does exist here and I am very happy about that.
We are living in a school (dorm style) and taking language classes, and lots of seminars on safety and the like. We have eaten lots of MUTTON! And I actually like it, not many people do. We ate a salad for breakfast (weird, right? but good to get those vegetables!) and we eat alot of soup and other meats (mostly mutton- fried mutton, mutton dumplings, mutton soup).
The mountains here are beautiful!!! I hope I see lots more (the south is desolate!!) and theres lots of green which is surprising. I will be leaving on Thursday to go to my training soum (village).
The boys in this cafe are playing Call of Duty and its really inhibiting thinking and typing. I hope all is well and BAYERSTEI (goodbye!)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Counting Down the Hours

As I scramble to pack for two years, sign my life away, write thank you notes, shop, wait for Chacos that won't come until probably tomorrow, make phone calls, and just about anything you could ever think of---- I wanted to take a break to start this blog.
I am fortunate to have this opportunity to serve in the Peace Corps in Mongolia. I appreciate the support I have received (and understand the resistance I have also received from others). For those of you reading this from here on out-- you are a part of me, a part that will travel a long way with me. I will never forget the times our paths crossed.
All I have to say is: See ya in MONGOLIA!

Here is my address for the next couple of weeks:
 “Your Name,” PCT
Post Office Box 1036
Central Post Office
Ulaanbaatar 15160
Mongolia (via China)